2018 Assen MotoGP Race Result: Phillip Island, You Just Got Served

The main event at the Cathedral proved to be a wonderful improvised symphony where Honda, Yamaha, Ducati and Suzuki’s musical machines all got a solo of their own until Marc Marquez closed the show. The world champion’s fantastic recital included a race winning overtake on the outside of both Valentino Rossi and Andrea Dovizioso, followed by a lap a second faster than the opposition.

Marquez put the cherry on top of a race full of highlight reel moments. Another one of those was Alex Rins’ brave final chicane overtake on Maverick Viñales to decide the remaining podium places between themselves, with a very impressive second place for Rins and a nice anniversary present for Yamaha in the shape of a third place from Viñales.

Marquez might have looked favourite after his staggering pace in practice but while the result was somewhat predictable, the race was anything but. The poleman had made a perfect start but Jorge Lorenzo’s trademark rocket launch eclipsed the Repsol man, Lorenzo cutting short Marquez’s attempt to escape by getting past him on the opening lap. Behind them, Rossi wiggled his way into the top three, ahead of Dovizioso and Cal Crutchlow. Only one lap later, Marquez roared past Lorenzo once again in turn 15 to have another go at a getaway and that was only the prelude to what would follow – which was not for the faint of heart.

By lap three, Marquez was trying to make the best of the clear air with some red sectors but the Ducati’s grunt on the straight kept reeling him in. Only two tenths back, Rossi was leading a sizeable group with Dovizioso, Rins, Crutchlow, Andrea Iannone, Viñales and Johann Zarco. One lap later, Lorenzo made another attack on Marquez and the Spaniard was quickly demoted another place by Rossi, the two leaders starting to get a half second’s advantage on Marquez, who was being attacked by Dovizioso. While the two old rivals were swapping paint, Rossi clattered into the back of Lorenzo in an odd incident where Lorenzo looked like he lost the front and surprised the Italian, both bikes luckily surviving more or less unscathed.

By lap seven, Marquez pounced on Rossi and Dovizioso followed him through, dropping Rossi behind Rins. While Marquez and Dovizioso were providing the entertainment, Rins wanted a bite himself and also got past the Italian. All the while Rossi, Viñales, Crutchlow and Zarco were all biding their time at the end of the group. Rins could not hold off Dovizioso for long and the Italian was glued to the world champion’s tail once again by lap ten. But just when you thought Dovizioso was prepared to join his teammate at the front, Rins stuck his nose back in the podium battle, leaving the Ducati in the clutches of the factory Yamahas. Rins went one better in Lorenzo’s aid and ran Marquez a bit too close for comfort, demoting the Spaniard to fourth, behind Dovizioso once again. Viñales made it past Rossi just behind the shenanigans, Zarco and Crutchlow just about keeping in touch with the lead group. If you thought this is getting confusing, just wait.

At the halfway point of the race, Dovizioso finally found his way to his leading teammate, Marquez also getting a bit of revenge on Rins soon after. The Suzuki man was still posting personal best laptimes but he allowed a small gap to form behind the lead trio and invited Viñales to take charge on the pursuit.

With ten laps to go, the top three started to play and last year’s title rivals finally demoted Lorenzo from the lead. That was not Lorenzo’s last word, the Spaniard having another go at his compatriot soon after but that was shorted lived and Lorenzo started going backwards. Meanwhile, Rossi had dragged the second group back into the battle but it was Viñales who made the best of it by getting past Marquez. The leaders did not get much of a breather either, because while the Ducatis were fighting like there was no tomorrow, Marquez and Viñales helped themselves to a piece of the victory pie.

With eight laps remaining, Viñales took a turn at the front as only Marquez, Dovizioso and Rossi were keeping up with the leader, Rins leading Lorenzo a second back. Marquez finally got another shot to escape with seven laps to go but the Yamaha’s youngster retaliated and did not allow the Honda man to get away.

With six laps to go, the Marquez/Viñales battle went off track and allowed Dovizioso and Rossi back into the lead, the young Spaniards having to do the work all over again. The two-way battle turned four-wide in turn six and Marquez went on the outside to retrieve the lead ahead of Dovizioso and the Yamahas led by Rossi, the rodeo ride allowing Rins and Crutchlow back into contention.

With three laps to go, Marquez was pushing hard to extend his lead to over half a second, which quickly turned into a second one lap later. Desperation set in behind the Spaniard, Rossi going for a move on Dovizioso but soon found himself sixth after he was nudged out by his compatriot, both on the losing end and allowing Viñales and Rins into the provisional podium positions.

Marquez pulled the plug and posted his fastest lap on the penultimate lap, starting the final lap with a 1.5 seconds lead. While his team was trying to keep the feisty world champion cool, Rins pounced on the final chicane on Viñales, the Yamaha man having to settle for third. Rossi’s late move on Dovizioso was not as successful and the Ducati pulled back to keep fourth. Crutchlow crossed the line sixth, almost a second behind Rossi, with Lorenzo fading to seventh place and with Zarco, Alvaro Bautista and Jack Miller completing the top ten.

In the heat of a beautiful battle, Rossi came out the losing party in the championship, Marquez extending his lead over the Italian to 41 points going to the Spaniard’s beloved Sachsenring. Viñales stays third, 47 points down, with Zarco fourth with a 59 point deficit.


Pos. Num. Rider Bike Gap
1 93 Marc MARQUEZ Honda 41'13.863
2 42 Alex RINS Suzuki +2.269
3 25 Maverick VIÑALES Yamaha +2.308
4 4 Andrea DOVIZIOSO Ducati +2.422
5 46 Valentino ROSSI Yamaha +2.963
6 35 Cal CRUTCHLOW Honda +3.876
7 99 Jorge LORENZO Ducati +4.462
8 5 Johann ZARCO Yamaha +7.001
9 19 Alvaro BAUTISTA Ducati +7.541
10 43 Jack MILLER Ducati +13.056
11 29 Andrea IANNONE Suzuki +14.255
12 44 Pol ESPARGARO KTM +15.876
13 41 Aleix ESPARGARO Aprilia +15.986
14 45 Scott REDDING Aprilia +16.019
15 26 Dani PEDROSA Honda +16.043
16 53 Tito RABAT Ducati +16.416
17 38 Bradley SMITH KTM +29.073
18 55 Hafizh SYAHRIN Yamaha +33.824
19 30 Takaaki NAKAGAMI Honda +34.037
20 12 Thomas LUTHI Honda +47.853
    Not Classified    
  9 Danilo PETRUCCI Ducati 9 Laps
  10 Xavier SIMEON Ducati 9 Laps
  17 Karel ABRAHAM Ducati 15 Laps
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What a race! The grandest ceremony in the cathedral.... just breathtaking!

I need to watch it again just to get my head around it. 

Can't wait for your comments David!

I think I have ever watched, to top it off, none of the leaders...(how many were there again?) crashed out or were knocked off and the passes were all acceptable if a little hard at times.  Bloody awesome race.

He controlled the race even before the first lap. Switched from his favorite Hard compound. Forced Cal and Rossi to follow. As soon as it started, never let Jorge out of sight, kept Dovi in check. Whenever Dovi overtook him, he showed what he retaliated immediately. I was sure by last 6 laps he will start blasting away. Probably Rins ruined it a bit. But then last few laps, the alien came out. Great race.

And that start by Jorge. Respect. 🙏. 

you probably watched the race. consider yourself fortunate. i do.

the riders seem to think i have a stiff breeze to congratulate for todays action, but without those amazing gentlemen, i would have been watching trees and grass wavering to and fro.

i am truly thankful to all involved in putting on that show.



Wow! These are the good days.

Vinales has an apt accent color in red - like blood and fire. Such intensity, aggression. It almost felt like a violence, or burning the house down. The track layout offerred Yamaha a meaty bone. Maverick gnashed and tore it apart. Biaggiesque facial hair fits his mindset.

Rins, Suzuki with a better new motor, this flowing track. Lovely! Getting into the apex he was able to put that bike wherever be wanted predictably and with stability. He found some lines and opportunities afforded to few. He mirrored Marquez at times. And more once, Marquez had QUITE a save battling Rins! One thing to do that alone in practice, quite another like this. Brilliant feel and bike control, presence. Fear, self doubt and distraction don't disrupt him no matter how far over the limit.

The Ducati looked good. Lorenzo was spinning and sliding that rear tire, it started to go off a bit late in the race. Dovi strong. Lorenzo on a Honda next year is a very interesting prospect eh? Over the course of the season it looks to be the weapon of choice. It isn't easy to get the Ducati to work everywhere. The 2018 Duc is a well balanced bike - here it shined without big braking or long straight opportunities. While it is a bit physical to wrestle, the Honda can be ridden smoothly as Dani can attest. Look out.

A battle for 12th place - the Espargaro rivalry, AND that of KTM/Aprilia? Pol in Orange comes out on top. Good job!

...obviously they all were. What a spectacular spectacular this was! I had to pause the race just to catch my breath and slow my heart rate. Lorenzo sliding around all over the track, on a bucking bronco of a duc, still looking comfortable but nowhere near "on rails" as he was on the Yamaha shows me he's more than ready for the slippery Honda next year. Anyone who says he can't fight through traffic hasn't been watching. Bummer he used up his tires.

This race was incredible. Most exciting I've seen in my 10 years of watching. I love how close in performance the top bikes and riders are.

Having made the pilgrimage from Australia in 2015, seeing Rossi and Marquez go at it, and some final corner argy-bargy, I am envious of those who were there this year for what is certainly the finest contest I have seen in the modern four-stroke era.  Absolutely thrilling from start to finish.
The best Motorsport has to offer, bar-none.

Great circuits make for excellent races. The four & a half kilometer version of Assen delivered the goods.

Phillip Island is still P.I. different to Assen. Don't ask me to choose, that would be like asking which of my kids I prefer.

If that many different riders putting so many passes on Marc Marquez couldn't stop him winning.....we know there is not much that can. It was so good to see many riders close to MM93's pace & able to pass at times.

Sachsenring looks like a tough race for everyone else.

and create terrific circuits. Assen has more left-right flicking, Philip Island has longer faster corners and elevation changes. I wouldn't be able to decide which I like the most either. The great thing is that MotoGP seems more at home at both of those tracks than anywhere else. I hope they never change.

Everyone gave it as hard as they took it today. Rossi and Dovi battling down the main straight was like a do or dare movie scene. None of them blinked. Both of them lost out. Like a movie.

Has been changed several times and some of it's magic has been subdued. Phillip Island is still the same.

The map that Marquez switched to that alliwed him to check out after running the same pace as everybody else until the last few laps?

I'm looking forward the new ecu rules for next season.


*Marc Marquez' Right Wrist  :)

But kidding aside, he explained in the postrace presser: (paraphrasing) When you have to think about attacking and defending at the same time, it allows for pass attempts by others and slows you down. When he was able to get into the lead and extend a small margin, then he could run his optimum lines, drop into the predicted race pace and extend the lead.

Yes aj700 it was a hell of a start from JLo99. I bet Maverick Vinales wishes he could make starts like that. Who needs pole position when you can launch it off the grid that rapidly ?

         Checked the supposed premier car race, after 16 laps the top 15 separated by 52 seconds. Some people get excited about F1, i can appreciate the sheer speed  the cars can produce. But Its not really racing, especially afer the leading 5 or 6 places. If MotoGP gets any closer might have to take a vallium just to watch, what a superb performance last night from ALL combatants. And further endorsment of just how lucky we are at the moment to witness such great competition. Now if DORNA can just fix WSBK as well. Beamer12

Used to be almost as fun or more fun to watch. Now I don't even bother the free viewings, ugh

being realistic the couple of races prior have been pretty ordinary as stand alone spectacles. If you parachuted in not knowing Lorenzo’s back story you would have  been wondering what all the fuss was about.

Not to mention their championship race is ultra competitive (1 point difference at the top) where ours is pretty much done and dusted before the Summer break with MM likely having a 2 race buffer.

Sorry, just keeping it real, not that I give a rats about F1.

Agreed on WSB though.

Is it possible that something changed regarding the production of this year’s Assen race? I have always looked forward to watching it because of the racing it produces - but this year it just seemd a lot ‘faster’ than it has been in the past. 

I have not missed a single race in over 12 years and I truly believe this is the first race i have watched in a long time where we got a sense of just how fast these guys are going. It was simply amazing to watch. Wow. 

Also on production - how could Dorna cut away to show a replay of Vinales when they have the front three abreast hard charging into a corner. WTF!

Speaking of WTF - how did Marquez save that tank slapper?How did Jorge stay on when his front folded and Rossi found his tail in 5th gear? 

I needed a dark room to lay down in for a while after today  



It looked faster because it was closer in the fighting, no one cares about a bike going fast around a track without competition.

I don't think Dorna is in charge of the camera crew / production but I know the moment you speak about which was indeed ridiculous.

Jorge's save to me, is the best I've ever seen at 220kmh

Absolutely WTF!  How many moments did we miss because the camera switched to  the crowd or the garage... I cannot believe it! 

My worst was when 3 riders had swapped places and we never got to see how it happened: unf******gbelievable!


Normally during the middle of the race they show the overhead replay of the start.  I can't recall the last time we didn't get a replay of the start.  Ironically, with Jorge's charge from 10th to second on the start straight, I would have actually liked to see the overhead replay for once!

He's been going good again lately while Dani is going bad.. rumors are his name might be on the Petronas ride.

Either way; WHAT a race! I do think some are falling through here like Jack Miller... my fellow countryman is not living up Rins for example. Good thinking by Suzuki it seems.

Thanks David

I guess the english language - or any other idiom, for that matter - has enough words to express yesterday's awesomeness? :)

In the meantime here is my ideal podium, based on who, IMO, deserved to be on the podium. Though, they all did...

1 - Marquez, no doubt

2 - Rins, Lorenzo and my favorite GOAT

3 - Vinales

4 - Dovi... as per his own words P4 is where "he expected to be, the best he could do"  and he really outdid himself to stay there

like i posted earlier in the weekend, it is good for a rider to be, in Cal’s case, extraordinarily confident. But then he took a shot at Dobi for saying he can’t bring it home lately. AND....

Now he is saying that Marc having access to his data is basically working against him. CAL, ARE YOU INSANE? YOU COULDN’t CARRY MM93’s JOCK STRAP!!! sorry to vent, not like me. But this is getting rediculous. 

It seems Cal likes to think he is in the same league as Marc, since he so often refers to 'Marc and I'. His style is more similar to Marc's than Pedrosa, so I can see that he likes to compare his decisions or riding to Marc. But sorry Cal, you are a great rider no doubt, but you are no Marquez. Or Rossi or Lorenzo for that matter. The proof of the pudding is in the eating and the odd win doesn't make you a title contender.

Where does this come from, considering the guy was leading the championship, only to fold like a cheap suit over the next few races and fall to 8th. He’s steadied the ship a little but is in no position to point the finger at Dovi or Marc.

I get that some people like that he speaks his mind, but that in no way means what he says is truthful or accurate.

I finally watched the race. Had to remind myself to breathe occasionally. Absolutely amazing how close and clean (mostly!) those top 6 guys rode. All the more impressive that Márquez could pull away and lead the most important lap. And kudos to Cal, a worthy race-winner but no longer generally considered an alien-in-training, for hanging on. 

I finally watched the race. Had to remind myself to breathe occasionally. Absolutely amazing how close and clean (mostly!) those top 6 guys rode. All the more impressive that Márquez could pull away and lead the most important lap. And kudos to Cal, a worthy race-winner but no longer generally considered an alien-in-training, for hanging on. 

David, if you are still standing outside Pedrosa's hotel I think you can safely say you don't need to wait any longer.

Or, if no one has seen David since midway through the race, go check behind bins and such just in case, he may have collapsed with the excitement.

And David, if you are on page 37 feel free to pause the feverish typing. Hit save. Post it. Get some sleep.

Is everything ok? My parenting instincts are perking up.

No need for apologies David, you provide us all with peerless coverage of each race and all the goings-on in between and you do it for nix. Just glad to hear all is well. 

Now, time to read!